What are 3D Renderings?

We can provide 3d renderings & 3d Walk thoughts on all our new house/Reno plan designs & addition designs. Renderings can be done for one storey house plans, two storey house plans, cottage house plans, townhouse design etc.

Pick your colours and let use bring your home to life! 

What does BCIN stand For?

Licensed With Ministry of Housing / BCIN House Plans: (What Does it Mean?)

BCIN stands for Building Code Identification Number.

 (Under article of the Ontario Building code)

House designers must have their BCIN # to provide design service & issue construction drawings in Ontario. 

No BCIN = No permit.


Near the end of 1999, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing started to look at a way to create a licensed body of designers, and streamline the building permit process across all Ontario.   What they came up with was Bill 124 which came into effect in 2006. Among the points stated above, other intentions of Bill 124 were to provide protection to the public and include the following upgrade in standards:


  • Requiring qualification for building officials, house designers, architects, who wish to provide a design service and submit house drawings for building permits.

  • Mandatory acquiring & registering of liability insurance  would be required for all firms wishing to have their drawings used for submission to acquire building permits in Ontario

  • Specific timeframes for processing & issuing of a building permit,

  • Mandatory use of a province wide permit application forms & new rules in regards to governing permit fees

  • The owner of Dustin's Design & Drafting designs is licensed under article of the Ontario Building Code, meet all requirements of Bill 124, insured and are registered with Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing. However, holding a BCIN license should not be the only way to select  a house/reno design firm. Ask to see my past projects, portfolio, real un-edited testimonials , speak to past clients and inspect examples of finished drawings. 7 years of residential custom home design  & actual build experience is strongly recommended.


Please note:

As per 15.11-(5) of the O.B.C no person shall engage in the activities of "design" or give opinion concerning house construction/design whether that be in the form of sketches, plans, specifications, drawings or graphic representation unless they are qualified and meet the requirements of the Ontario Building code. A cad operator employed by a licensed designer doing so is in contravene of the Building Code Act of Ontario.  It is illegal.

What Software Program do you Use for your Designs?

Chief Architect Software is a developer of 3D architectural home design software for builders, interior designers, architects, and DIY home enthusiasts. Chief Architect uses building information modeling tools to create a 3D model of the structure and automatically generates all of the building systems of the home

Chief Architect Software has been reported to be easy to use (in comparison to other 3D CAD packages) for 3D home design, and thus provides a valuable tool in the hands of builders, contractors and homeowners who have traditionally lacked the skills to run complex CAD software.

We use Chief Architect software. Although we have experience in AutoCAD and others over the years, we have found Chief Architect software to provide more details, that help our clients understand and also interact with us easier during the design process.


Is it true I need a Building permit for any renovation?

Ontario Building Permit Process

Many clients have asked how to go about obtaining a building permit once their house plans are completed.

It’s a good idea to talk to your local building departments before you hire a  designer.  They will inform you of zoning, approvals & permits that may be singular to your building lot that should be dealt with and clarified before time & money is spent on engaging a house designer.

In general, a building permit is required to erect, install, extend, alter or repair a building. The following are some examples, but are not limited to the types of projects that require building permits and thus, require a licensed designer. 

This list applies to all Ontario residents.

  • Construction of a new home

  • Addition of a carport, garage, porch or room(s) to an existing home.

  • Any structural work, including alterations to interior partitions or the installation of new skylights, windows  or doors.

  • New openings for, or changes to the size of doors and windows.

  • Addition of dormer(s).

  • Enclosing a porch or deck.

  • Installing a ramp or elevating device.

  • Install a wood burning appliance

  • Addition of a deck to an existing home if deck is greater than 24" of grade.

  • Raising a house to provide a full basement.

  • Constructing or installing detached accessory buildings such as a garage, shed, or playhouse larger than 108 square feet (10 square metres).

Here is a step by step break down of the permit process: (applies to all Ontario Residents)

1. Ontario Licensed Permit  Drawings:

(supplied by "Dustin's Design & Drafting)

Take (2) complete  sets of scaled house plans with a signed Schedule 1 BCIN  by a licensed designer, and submit them with a fully completed Building application form.  

 House Drawings are to include a noted & fully dimensioned:

  • Foundation Plan (i.e. footings, foundation walls, structure)

  • Floor Plan (s) (i.e. wall thickness, roof  construction , openings)

  • Elevations (i.e. grade heights, exterior finishes, pitches

  • Cross Section & Detail (s) (i.e. all floor, roof, and wall assemblies, structural components)


2. Additional Information/Plans that may be required:

(certain items can be supplied by Dustin's Design & Drafting)

  • If pre-engineered truss system, floor system, and beams are being specified,  you will need to submit shop drawings supplied from the manufacturer

  • HVAC Design & Calculation – for all new construction & occasionally additions, you will be required to submit Heating, Ventilation & Air conditioning, Heat Loss & Gain calculations completed by a licensed mechanical designer, signed with their respective BCIN.

  • (2) Copies of a site plan & lot grading plan may also be required, depending on your specific lot and local building authority (i.e. lot size, location of proposed building, site services, setbacks, road entrance etc.)

  • Septic Tank  & Tile Bed Design.  For new home construction in the country you will need to submit a tank size and tile bed size by a qualified septic designer to meet the requirement of the size of your new home.

  • For additions/renovation in the country, you will need to verify that the existing septic tank/tile bed will be able to handle the increase due to the addition.  If not sufficient – it will need to be extended or replaced.

3. Building Permit Submission:

With all the approvals and proper documents for the items listed above, and cheque to pay for  your fees, you can now apply for your permit.

(Building permit fees vary between regions, counties & cities – but is based on the construction value of the building)Other fees that may be required depending on location and are typically correlated to the Additional information/plans listed above are:

  • Septic Permit Fee (amount is based on new construction or repair/alteration for increased size)

  • Demolition fee (if you are tearing down portion or an entire existing home to build on top)

  • Plumbing Permit Fee (based off fixtures)

  • Development Charges

  • On-Site Temporary Living Accommodation (when living on property in a trailer while new home is being constructed)

  • Water & Sewer Connection Fee

  • Road Damage Deposit .

  • Development Fees for newly zoned lots

4. House/Reno Plan  Review & Permit Approval:

Local authorities/examiners will check all house plans, permits, application for compliance with all codes, bylaws, and regulations. If everything is good, your building permit will be issued within 10 days.

5. Required Building Inspections:

At key stages during construction work on the building must be inspected to ensure that all construction is being done properly. To be granted permission from the building department to move on with the next phase of construction – everything must comply with the Ontario Building Code (i.e. foundation, framing, plumbing, HVAC , insulation etc.)

All permits and home plans must be ready for presentation on-site for during inspection.

These inspections must be arranged by the owner – the building department will not contact you.  As a rule you must notify the local building inspectors for an inspection times 24-48 hours in advance.

If you have any questions of concerns about this process, or wondering how to go about obtaining certain approvals, plans etc, feel free to contact us at (613)795-2860.

How do I go about Hiring a Renovation Company & Contractor?

Providing reputable contactor reference:

-There are many factors that a homeowner must think about before choosing the right contractor for you. With my years of experience this is another avenue, we can explore together. I only provide contractor reference that I personally know their quality of work.  Please see a few items below regarding a contractor to think about:

1. Not available when you call

The first sign is possibly not an obvious one, but if they are not sitting in the office waiting for the phone to ring this is a good thing. It means that they are busy on a job site. Remember that the busier they are the more business they have. If they are busy it usually means that they are good at what they do, and would rather stay focused on the job, and not answer every call. So if you have to leave a message, leave one and just wait for the return phone call.

2. It may take awhile to get to you

Another sign is that it may take them awhile to get to your job. This means that they are going to stay focused on one job at a time. This may mean you have to wait one or two months before they can start work on your job. It may be well worth the wait if they are going to be that focused on your job as well.

3. Very low quotes

When you are searching for a contractor you usually spend time getting as many quotes as possible. You don't necessarily have to go with the highest quote, but never go with the lowest quote. The lower quote could mean that the contractor does not know what they really need to get the job done, or that they are desperate for the business.

4. Evaluate the job first

The first thing they do is take a look at the job site, where the work is going to be done. This should help them to give you a reasonable estimate after looking at it. A good contractor may be able to give you a quote over the phone, but most will want to look at the size of the job before they decide.

5. A license is a must

Each contractor needs to have a license. Be sure that you check to make sure they have one. A licensed contractor has to go through a thorough background check and other qualifications are also required in order to get the license.

A reputable company that we recommend is

the OttawaRenoTeam


Can I Save Money By Purchasing an Existing Set of Plans?

To purchase an existing set of plans you may assume that you will save more money by skipping the design process.

An existing set of plans is created to suit a larger audience and can mean that it doesn't suit your specific lifestyle or needs on the property. If there are certain features or rooms that you don't need, it can mean paying for extra square footage that you don't use. Architectural designers like Dustin Design &  Drafting will ask how you live to discover a floor plan that will accommodate you and your family's needs and lifestyle.

If you have your own ideas, drawings, or conceptual plans, we can help you design that custom home, renovation, or addition a reality